What Languages Are Spoken In Montenegro?

Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro.
Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro.

Montenegro is a country that has been ranked as an upper middle-income economy. The country is located in the southwestern part of Europe and borders Croatia which lies on the western side and Kosovo on the eastern side. Bosnia and Serbia are to the northwest and northeast of the country, respectively.

Podgorica is the capital city of Montenegro and is the most populous city in the country. Overtime, the country has undergone some transformations. Initially, the country was part of the kingdom of Yugoslavia, but later it transformed into the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia when they broke up from Yugoslavia and joined Serbia. It subsequently, transformed to become an independent republic of Montenegro after a referendum. The country has diverse native languages, which comprise of Bosnian, Croatian, as well as Albanian. However, the primary language that the majority of people in Montenegro speak is Montenegrin.

Montenegrin Language: Official Language Of Montenegro

Montenegrin is the official language used in the country. According to a census of 2003, 25% of the population spoke Montenegrin. The small number of Montenegrin speakers was attributed to the majority of people being speakers of the Serbian language. The census revealed that about 63% used the Serbian language as their primary medium of communication, a factor that has introduced some level of controversy concerning the language that the country should use as the official language. Another issue that raised the controversy was the fact that majority of people in the country who are Montenegrins are either Serbs or have a close association with the Serbians. In 1991, the country stated that its official language was Serbian before it changed to Montenegrin as per the 2007 Constitution. Just like other Serbo-Croatian languages such as Serbia, Bosnia, and Albania, Montenegrin uses Cyrillic and Latin alphabets.

Major Minority Languages Spoken In Montenegro

Croatian Language

This is one of the minority languages spoken in Montenegro and is linked to the Croatians who live in the country. The language has various dialects, which include Kajkavian and Chakavian, and is spoken by people in the neighboring Bosnia and Serbia. Moreover, it is the official language of the Croatian nation. One thing that is worth nothing is that some words in the Montenegrin and Serbian language have a close relationship with the Croatian language.

Bosnian Language

Bosnia is one of the minority languages in the country and has several similarities with the Montenegrin language. One of the similarities is the utility of Cyrillic and the Latin alphabet in its writings. The language is also associated with the Bosnians who live near and inside the country. Furthermore, the language is used in places like Kosovo, Serbia, and Herzegovina.

Albanian Language

Albanians who live near and within Montenegro use the Albanian language. Over its history, the Albanian language has been a subject of controversy concerning the alphabet to use. Northern writers use Latin alphabet because it resonates well with the Catholic religion whereas Orthodox Albanians in the south use Greek alphabet. Besides, some Albanians professing the Islamic religion used Arabic writings. However, the need to unify the language compelled officials in the country to dictate the use of Latin alphabet.


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